Trains have been suspended across the UK as thousands of railroad workers strike for the second time this week.

About 40,000 members of the Network Rail Railroad, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union, and 13 railroad operators, left again on Thursday after failing to resolve a bitter dispute over wages, jobs and conditions.

Only one in five trains runs, most are restricted to trunk lines, and about half of the network is closed.

Service will start later than usual at 7:30 am and shut down early at 6:30 pm.

Members of the Greater Anglia driver’s union Aslev are also attacking Thursday in another dispute over payments.

The company advises passengers to travel only when necessary.

Meanwhile, the government has announced plans to change the law to allow companies to supply skilled agency workers to fill staff shortages during strikes.

Passengers at Waterloo Station (James Manning / PA) as train operations continue to be interrupted

Ministers point out that under current trade union law, employment businesses are restricted from supplying dispatched workers to supplement strikers, which can have “disproportionate effects.” Stated.

The government said the law would remove “troublesome” legal restrictions and give strike-affected companies the freedom to use the services of the employment business, which can provide skilled dispatched workers in a hurry.

Network Rail welcomed the move, but unions accused it of being a “disaster recipe.”

On Thursday morning, some major stations, such as London Euston and London Paddington, were virtually unmanned.

Frank Bird, senior highway network planner, said the traffic on the highway and major A roads on Thursday morning was “very good.”

“The look and feel of the network is that the traffic is declining,” he told PA News Agency.

“I’m a little busy going in and out of towns and city centres.”

He added: “Two years later (from the Covid pandemic), we learned to work in different ways. It’s a very different situation because people work from home.

“Despite the ongoing rail conflict, people can still continue to work.”

RMT union member (James Manning / PA) outside Waterloo Station

Steve Montgomery, chair of the rail transport group on behalf of the rail operator, was asked why rail workers were not guaranteed that reform would not lead to compulsory redundancy.

He told the BBC breakfast that it depends on the extent of the reforms, the popularity of the voluntary layoff system, and the number of workers who can be retrained.

He added: “We believe that when we work on reform, we can respond well to everyone who wants to stay within the organization.

“So we need to go through the process and see how many people are left, and hopefully no one needs to be forced redundant.”

A train sits on the siding of Heaton Depot (Owen Humphreys, PA) in Newcastle

The RMT has accused Transport Minister Grant Shaps of “wrecking” the negotiations by not allowing Network Rail to withdraw the letter “threatening the redundancy of 2,900 members.”

Mr. Chaps argued that RMT’s claim was a “lie.”

A Network Rail spokesman said:

Labor Party lawmaker Birkenhead Mick Whitley joined the RMT member at the picket line outside Liverpool Lime Street Station.

He states: Let’s get it right. The Labor Party was born from the trade union movement. All Labor members should come out because they are our political voice in parliament. “

He said the paid deal with Merseyrail strengthened the argument that the government was “manufacturing disputes.”

The Transport Salary Association (TSSA) announced on Wednesday that members of unfunded businesses have accepted a 7.1% payment offer.

“We don’t want to ruin people’s travel arrangements, but if you’re pushed into the corner, you have to do something,” Whitley added.

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